The hacktivist collective Anonymous has hacked Russian state TV to show war footage of the invasion of Ukraine to oblivious Russian citizens.
The hacking group made the claim on Twitter, and said that it had hacked live TV channels of Russia 24, Channel One and Moscow 24 to show the realities of Russia’s invasion of its neighbour. The group also hacked into Russia streaming services Wink and Ivi.
The hack comes amid a media clampdown in Russia by Vladimir Putin’s government, where even calling Putin’s “special military operation” an invasion can earn sanction from Russian authorities.
The compromise of Russian state TV and streaming services took place on Sunday, and reportedly involved the “biggest Anonymous op ever seen”.
Part of the footage aired on Russian TV included the message: “ordinary Russians are against the war” and urged them to oppose the invasion.
Last week Anonymous claimed to have ‘shut down’ Russia’s space agency so that Moscow lost control of its spy satellites.
However the Director General of Roscosmos, Dmitry Olegovich, denied the claim and called the hacker group ‘petty swindlers’.
Jake Moore, global cyber security advisor at ESET pointed out that it often very difficult to deal with hackers that don’t have the traditional criminal motivations for carrying out cyberatacks.
“Hacktivist group Anonymous’ persistent attacks show that very few organisations are safe from an online invasion,” said Moore. “Even with Russian TV companies trying to hold off such threats, this infamous collective are too determined to completely prevent hacks.”
“Whilst hacking is usually synonymous with illegal bad actors and holding people to financial ransom, Anonymous are taking different approach and attacking with very different motivating factors, which often makes prevention harder,” said Moore.
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